Unless you’ve been living in a bunker all your life, you certainly know cocoa. Derived from the cacao bean, it is the stuff from which those sweet treats we so love are made from. But in Western Europe partygoers have found a new use for it. As a party drug.
The cacao bean is considered a superfood. Cacao is harvested from a small evergreen tree with the same name. Raw cacao powder, the unprocessed part of the bean, is linked to various health benefits. These include antioxidant and anti-cancer properties. Some even say it is the healthiest food in the world.
However, the aforementioned partygoers from Western Europe are not using this superfood for the sake their health. In fact, some of them are not even using it in the conventional (aka oral) way.
In recent days, partygoers are using cacao – or cocoa – for what they believe is its mind-altering properties.
Okay, some might say it’s not mind-altering per se, but brain boosting. They are after the rush of energy and euphoria users report they get from snorting the powder. They are using raw cacao powder to get a high.
It is not clear as to how widespread the use of cacao as a party drug is. Most reports seem to originate from Berlin, Germany. Here, cacao powder is taking the place of alcohol and illicit party drugs such as ecstasy. Partygoers use it to keep going all night. Some clubs don’t even sell alcohol, but instead serve cocoa in various forms. And it is perfectly legal in most if not all geographical regions. It is food, after all.
So, what is it in cacao, or cocoa, that is so alluring to those partygoers?
Well, the active compounds in cocoa can boost the levels of serotonin and endorphins in the brain, giving one a pleasurable sensation, even euphoria. In fact, dark chocolate is one of the top 10 foods for brain health as it has been found to potentially help improve blood flow to the brain. There’s also a flood of magnesium, which has muscle relaxing properties.
However, some experts have raised doubts as to cacao’s ability to induce a psychedelic high. They assert that its mood-boosting effects are subtle and what the partygoers have been reporting may just be a placebo effect.
You can read a more report on the Ozy.com website.